12 SEPTEMBER 16, 2021 RIDGEWOOD TIMES WWW.QNS.COM
The key to success
The “Key to NYC” vaccine mandate
for various businesses — including
restaurants, gyms and
arenas — has been in place for nearly
a month, but Monday, Sept. 13, marked
the fi rst day the city began enforcing
Up until now, business owners have
been allowed to operate on a sort of honors
system, checking their customers
to ensure that they’ve received the COVID
19 vaccine. But as of Sept. 13, they’ll
face serious fi nancial penalties from the
city if they don’t properly enforce the
Not long aft er Mayor Bill de Blasio announced
the Key to NYC program, some
disgruntled business owners protested
a decision; some went as far as to pursue
legal action. They charged the mandate
was “capricious and arbitrary,” that it
didn’t equally impact businesses and
placed an undue burden on them to
control the behavior of others.
And there’s a point to these arguments,
but they willfully ignore the
reality of the situation.
We’re nine months into the
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New York City government began enforcing the “Key to NYC” vaccine mandate for indoor businesses on Sept.
13, 2021. Photo by Dean Moses
vaccination eff ort in New York, and
still only 61% of the city’s nearly 9 million
residents are fully vaccinated.
COVID-19 cases have increased over
the last couple of months, even with
the vaccine, due to the proliferation of
the delta variant among unvaccinated
Aft er the vaccination eff ort peaked
in April and May, the numbers started
dropping — so the city began off ering
all kinds of lucrative incentives, even
cash payments, to get people vaccinated.
Still, many unvaccinated New Yorkers
remained stubborn, having made their
judgment against the vaccine based
on the mountain of misinformation
heaped upon them on social media and
ignorant loudmouths on cable news.
Then in July and August, the state and
city began mandating the vaccine for
certain employees and places of business.
It was the last resort, as eff orts to
get New Yorkers vaccinated voluntarily
weren’t keeping up with the spread of
this highly infectious, often deadly
Businesses in New York City must
understand that continuing to let
people play the honors system with
their health is going to make overcoming
the pandemic damn near impossible.
The longer COVID-19 festers and mutates,
the greater the chances that the
virus becomes vaccine resistant. That
would potentially throw society back to
square one — to business restrictions
and closures, to public lockdowns, to
prolonged mask mandates.
Do we want to beat COVID-19, or do
we want to suff er with it forever?